The feeling of being inert was very common to me when I first began directing theater. I often found myself feeling at a loss for words, ideas, and inspirations, both before and in rehearsals. At first, I tried to answer every question, solve every problem, and leave very little room for the actors and stage managers to see that I felt like I had no idea what to do. The lucky part is that I often was at Ghostlight Theater Camp, an environment filled with incredible, strong campers who were launching into Sweeney Todd and Seussical with a passion that wouldn’t let me bowl them over with my insecurity.
Larissa Guerini-Maraldi as Antigone.
Gradually, my fear gave way to comfort. I decided it was better to own the fact that I didn’t have all the answers and to perhaps begin by listening rather than by speaking. The shows I directed started having less of my fingerprint and more of a collective fingerprint. I can point to Antigone as a real example of what the practice of listening can lead to; an experience beyond one person and even beyond the cast.